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"Nothing is in the intellect that was not first in the senses." - Triniboynkosi

The woman's gender role

  • Date Submitted: 10/08/2012 06:29 PM
  • Flesch-Kincaid Score: 64.2 
  • Words: 647
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A woman’s gender role is typically seen as a puppet; no voice or spine. They are only here to please her man, cook, clean, and pop out babies like a Pez dispenser. In the poem, “Breaking Tradition” by Janice Mirikitani she talks about four different rooms; her mothers, her daughter, the room of womanhood, and even her own room and how she so desperately wants to be open with her daughter, but how difficult it is to truly break tradition.. She uses the word “room” as a metaphor to depict the internal struggles woman go through; past or present.  
The first room she mentions is the room of womanhood. She talks about the “waiting room where we feel our hands/are useless dead speechless clamps” (12-13). This room where woman wait around to be wed, and the only time they are of any use is to clean up or cook for someone else. She describes a woman’s hands, as “dead speechless clamps” (13) to show how woman in some situations can not express their thoughts, feelings, or disapproval no matter what the case may be. It is almost as if they are “dead” (13), and non existent to world, unless they are being asked to do something. Usually women, more times than not, hold things together.
The second room she talks about is the room of her mothers which she called, “neat with silence” (17).   She then goes on to explain, the reason why her mothers room is so clean is because her, “defiance smothered in requirement to be otonashii” (18). Otonashii is a Japanese word meaning silent or polite; and even though her mother probably wanted to break tradition she could not because she was “smothered in requirement,” to be this Japanese woman who was silent and polite and followed all of the rules. Her mother had, “passion and loudness wrapped in an obi” (19). Mirikitani uses the word obi, which is an extremely heavy fabric, used to wrap around the waist of the woman wearing a Japanese kimono. Using the word obi and knowing the meaning of it, gives a clear idea just on how wrapped...

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